hitchcock tagged posts

The Two Faces of January

The Two Faces of January - Kirsten Dunst, Viggo Mortensen, Oscar Issac posterDirector: Hossein Amini

Writer: Hossein Amini

Cast: Viggo Mortensen, Kirsten Dunst, Oscar Isaac, Daisy Bevan

Cert: 12A

Running Time: 97 mins

Year: 2014

The lowdown: For his directorial debut, Drive screenwriter Hossein Amini delves into a different kind of darkness with this taut adaptation of Patricia Highsmith’s tale of greed and guilt. Viggo Mortensen, Kirsten Dunst and Oscar Isaac make a tantalising triangle, degenerating rapidly in the sweltering heat of Crete.

TTFOJ_1103_03411.DNGTTFOJ_1026_02656.DNG

The verdict: Since Hitchcock’s Strangers on a Train,the literary works of Patricia Highsmith have been favoured source material for screenwriters. Her recurring themes of duality, deception and morally blank anti-heroes make for fascinating viewing.

Set in the 1960’s, this interpretation of a lesser known Highsmith nov...

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The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (2013)

The Secret Life of Walter Mitty - Stiller, posterDirector: Ben Stiller

Writer: Steve Conrad

Cast: Ben Stiller, Kristen Wiig, Sean Penn, Shirley MacLaine, Patton Oswalt, Adam Scott

Cert: PG

Running time: 114mins

Year: 2013

The lowdown: Unabashedly sentimental and brimming with the joys of real life, Ben Stiller’s fifth directorial outing jumps off the screen – without the aid of 3D. A triumph of imagination and a cry to grab the world by the collar, it might be too heart-on-sleeve for some but with the wonder on display here it’s a tough nut who has not cracked by the moving final moments. It’s a wonderful life indeed…

The Secret Life of Walter Mitty - Stiller, Adam ScottThe Secret Life of Walter Mitty - Stiller, action movie

The full verdict: Loosely based on James Thurber’s 1939 two-page story, Stiller’s Walter Mitty is a satire on homogenized CGI-heavy fantasy and celebration of the little man in a corporate world.

As played b...

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Curse of Chucky

Curse of Chucky quad posterDirector: Don Mancini

Cast: Fiona Dourif, Danielle Bisutti, Brennan Elliott, Summer H. Howell, Maitland McConnell

Cert: 15

Running time: 97mins

Year: 2013

 

The lowdown: Almost a decade after the disappointing Seed of Chucky, the teeny titian terror returns, still voiced by Brad Dourif and the film’s USP being he’s terrifying his real life daughter, Fiona Dourif. Series creator Don Mancini has more luck behind the camera than he did directing Seed of Chucky, going back to basics with a horror-comedy that does not forget the horror.  Gory, funny and bizarrely kind of sweet, this C-word still has the power to surprise.

Curse of Chucky - killer dollCurse of Chucky - Summer Howell

The full verdict: Never one of horror’s scarier icons, Chucky nonetheless has infected pop culture, his DNA most recently evident in the comic smash Ted.

Curse of C...

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FrightFest Memories – Cheers for Fears

FrightFest 4 horsemenPreparing a FrightFest feature for the Sky Movies website last week got me thinking about the festival, now celebrating its fourteenth year.

It’s remarkable to think of the many memories I now have because of crazy days across the August bank holiday weekend.

I became a FrightFester at the first event in 2000, when I had more hair on my head and fewer inches around the waist. That year I only saw the documentaries Mario Bava: Maestro of the Macabre and Dario Argento: An Eye for Horror. Alan Jones introduced both and prior to An Eye for Horror revealed he’d seen the script for Mother of Tears and a frisson of excitement travelled through the room.

Time ultimately told a sorry tale of how dreadful the closing chapter of the Three Mothers trilogy was, but at that moment the potential of...

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M (1931)

M - poster

Welcome to Cinematic Greens

#3 – M (1931)

Director: Fritz Lang

Cast: Peter Lorre, Otto Wernicke, Theodor Loos, Ellen Widmann

Cert: PG

Running time: 110mins

Year: 1931

Accolades:
National Board of Review (1933)

Top Foreign Film

Contemporary review:
“(like) looking through the eye-piece of a microscope, through which the tangled mind is exposed…” – Graham Greene

Electric Shadows rating: medium_5

M - reflection MM - mirror

The lowdown: A still relevant, still troubling, still influential masterpiece, Fritz Lang’s M only improves with age. Peter Lorre was forever typecast as the sensitively portrayed child murderer who becomes the target of Berlin’s police force, criminal underworld and the increasingly vengeful mob...

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